Osama Bin Laden’s stepmother and sister are thought to be among four people killed after a private jet owned by the family crashed into a fireball after overshooting a runway while trying to land outside London.
The £7million Embraer Phenom 300 was owned by Salem Aviation in Jeddah, which is controlled by the dead terrorist’s family.
The Brazilian-built aircraft exploded after ploughing into a carpark killing the pilot and three passengers. Saudi Arabian media reported that Bin Laden’s stepmother and sister were among the four people killed, as well as their Jordanian pilot.
The jet was completely destroyed after it overshot the runway while trying to land at the Blackbushe Airport on the Hampshire-Surrey border.
Emergency services raced to the scene shortly after 3pm when the aircraft crashed into an overflow car park attached to the British Car Auction.
The Saudi Arabian embassy in London expressed their condolences to the Bin Laden family for their loss following yesterday’s accident.
Although based in Saudi Arabia, the plane was flying into Hampshire from Milan. The Bin Ladens have interests in northern Italy.
The crash is not being treated as terrorism-related.
According to AvGen Limited, who monitor flights arriving and departing Heathrow Airport, their equipment picked up the doomed jet as it approached Blackbushe Airport.
Their data suggests that the aircraft was flying at 1,250 feet when it approached the airfield. It then climbed rapidly 500 feet. When the pilot steered the jet to the runway, he started losing height at a rate of 3,000 feet per minute in the moments before the crash.
Bin Laden’s father Mohammed originally registered the tail number of the aircraft involved in today’s crash in the 1960s.
BIN LADEN FAMILY STILL BIG BUSINESS IN SAUDI ARABIA
The Saudi Red Sea trading port of Jeddah is the business HQ for the construction family’s fabulously successful Saudi BinLadin Group (SBG).
The Bin Ladens made their money by gaining exclusive rights to all religious building projects under Saudi control in Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem, Mohammed Bin Laden then branched out into lucrative civil projects.
More than a dozen Bin Laden brothers and half-brothers sit on the SBG board and help to run its operations from regional HQs across the Middle East.
SBG is estimated to be worth many billions of pounds.
He was flying the aircraft with the number HZ-IBN, when he crashed in 1967, however his family retained the registration.
The aircraft was registered to Salem Aviation – which was named after the dead terrorist’s eldest brother, who himself died in a crash in 1988 when he ploughed into powerlines in San Antonio, Texas.
A source close to Saudi Arabian authorities said: ‘Saudi officials in contact with members of the (bin Laden) family.
They are aware of the reports and are carrying out checks with members of the family for further information.’
A spokesman for Blackbushe Airport said: ‘A Phenom 300 Jet with four persons on board crashed near the end of the runway around 3.09 PM while attempting to make a landing.
‘The scene was attended by Blackbushe Fire & Rescue within minutes, followed by Hampshire Fire, Police and Ambulance units.
‘Emergency services are currently controlling the scene.’
The South East Coast Ambulance Service sent out a tweet saying they have had reports of four casualties after the incident near Farnborough.
The aircraft is understood to have been owned by a Saudi Arabian national.
All staff and customers at the British Car Auction site escaped unharmed.